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Harvey Korman

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Name  Harvey Korman
Medium  Film, television
Role  Actor
Years active  1950–2007
Height  1.91 m
Genres  Sketch comedy

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Born  February 15, 1927 Chicago, Illinois, U.S. (1927-02-15)
Resting place  Woodlawn Memorial Cemetery in Santa Monica, California
Died  May 29, 2008, Los Angeles, California, United States
Spouse  Deborah Korman (m. 1982–2008), Donna Ehlert (m. 1960–1977)
Children  Maria Korman, Laura Korman, Katherine Korman, Christopher Korman
Movies and TV shows  The Carol Burnett Show, Blazing Saddles, The Flintstones, Mama's Family, High Anxiety
Similar People  Tim Conway, Carol Burnett, Vicki Lawrence, Lyle Waggoner, Madeline Kahn

Birth name  Harvey Herschel Korman

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Harvey Herschel Korman (February 15, 1927 – May 29, 2008) was an American comedic actor who performed in television and film productions and was also a voice artist. His big break was being a featured performer on CBS' The Danny Kaye Show, but he is best remembered for his performances on the sketch comedy series The Carol Burnett Show and in several films by Mel Brooks.


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Early life

Harvey Korman Harvey Korman CBS Philly

Korman, who was of Russian Jewish descent, was born in Chicago, Illinois, the son of Ellen (née Blecher) and Cyril Raymond Korman, a salesman. He served in the United States Navy during World War II. After being discharged, he studied at the Goodman School of Drama. He was a member of the Peninsula Players summer theater program during the 1950, 1957, and 1958 seasons.

Early years

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Korman's first television role was as a head waiter in The Donna Reed Show episode, "Decisions, Decisions, Decisions". He appeared as a comically exasperated public relations man in a January 1961 episode of the CBS drama Route 66. He was seen on numerous television programs after that, including the role of Blake in the 1964 episode "Who Chopped Down the Cherry Tree?" on the NBC medical drama The Eleventh Hour and a bartender in the 1962 Perry Mason episode, "The Case of the Unsuitable Uncle." He frequently appeared as a supporting player on The Danny Kaye Show from 1963 through 1967. He was cast three times, including the role of Dr. Allison in "Who Needs Glasses?" (1962), on ABC's The Donna Reed Show. He also guest-starred on Dennis the Menace and on the NBC modern western series, Empire.

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From 1964 to 1966, he appeared three times in consecutive years on the CBS comedy The Munsters starring Fred Gwynne and Yvonne De Carlo. During the 1965–1966 season, Korman made regular appearances on ABC's The Flintstones as The Great Gazoo in its final season on network television.

The Carol Burnett Show

With the 1967 debut of The Carol Burnett Show, Korman saw his greatest fame. He was nominated for six Emmy Awards for his decade of work on The Burnett Show and won four times – in 1969, 1971 (for "Outstanding Achievement" by a performer in music or variety), 1972, and 1974. He was also nominated for four Golden Globes for the series, winning that award in 1975.

Other work

While appearing on The Carol Burnett Show, Korman gained further fame by appearing as the villainous Hedley Lamarr in the 1974 film Blazing Saddles. He also starred in High Anxiety (1977) as Dr. Charles Montague. In 1978 he appeared in the CBS Star Wars Holiday Special providing comedy in three of the special's variety segments: a cantina skit with Bea Arthur where he plays a barfly who drinks through a hole in the top of his head, another as Chef Gormanda, a four-armed parody of Julia Child, and one as a malfunctioning Amorphian android in an instruction video. In 1980 he played Captain Blythe in the Walt Disney comedy, Herbie Goes Bananas. In 1981 he played Count de Monet in History of the World, Part 1. In later years he did voice work for the live-action film The Flintstones as well as for the animated The Secret of NIMH 2: Timmy to the Rescue. He also starred in the short-lived Mel Brooks TV series The Nutt House, and in his final Mel Brooks film, as the zany Dr. Seward, in Dracula: Dead and Loving It.

He also reunited with fellow Carol Burnett Show alumnus Tim Conway, making a guest appearance on Conway's 1980–1981 comedy-variety series The Tim Conway Show. The two later toured the U.S. reprising skits from the show as well as performing new material. A DVD of new comedy sketches by Korman and Conway, Together Again, was released in 2006. Korman and Conway had been jointly inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in 2002.

Personal life

Korman was married to Donna Ehlert from 1960 to 1977, and they had two children together, Maria and Christopher Korman. He married Deborah Korman (née Fritz) in 1982 and was married to her until his death in 2008. They had two daughters together, Kate and Laura Korman.


Korman died at the age of 81 on May 29, 2008 at UCLA Medical Center, as the result of complications from a ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm he had suffered four months earlier. His grave is at Santa Monica's Woodlawn Cemetery.

Television roles

  • The Donna Reed Show, as Head Waiter in "Decisions, Decisions, Decisions" (1960)
  • Hennesey as Dr. Don Spright in "The Gossip Go-Round" (1961)
  • The Red Skelton Hour as Artie in "Appleby's Office Party" (1961)
  • Route 66 as Len Statler in "The Quick and the Dead" (1961) and as Mr. Mills in "Suppose I Said I Was the Queen of Spain?" (1963)
  • Perry Mason as the bartender in "The Case of the Unsuitable Uncle" (1962)
  • I'm Dickens, He's Fenster as Mr. Rembar in "The Acting Game" (1962)
  • The Detectives Starring Robert Taylor as Gibson Holly in "The Jagged Edge" (1962)
  • Empire as Bunce in "Pressure Lock" (1962)
  • Dennis the Menace as Mr. Griffin in "My Four Boys" (March 17, 1963)
  • Sam Benedict as a reporter in "Of Rusted Cannons and Fallen Sparrows" (1963)
  • Saints and Sinners as Jerry Grant in "The Year Joan Crawford Won the Oscar" (1963)
  • Glynis, with Glynis Johns, as Ken Bradford in "Three Men in a Tub" (1963)
  • The Lucy Show, three episodes (1964–1965)
  • Hazel as Max Denton in "Maid for a Day" (1964)
  • Gidget as Joe Hanley in "Daddy Come Home" (1965)
  • The John Forsythe Show in "Duty and the Beast" (1965)
  • The Munsters as the Psychiatrist in "Yes Galen, There Is a Herman" (1965)
  • The Munsters as Professor Fagenspahen in "Prehistoric Munster" (1966)
  • The Flintstones as the voice of The Great Gazoo (1965–1966)
  • F Troop as Col. Heindreich von Zeppel in "Bye, Bye, Balloon" (1966)
  • The Carol Burnett Show series regular (1967–1977)
  • The Wild Wild West as Baron Hinterstoisser in "The Night of the Big Blackmail" (1968)
  • The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour guest appearance (1971)
  • Tattletales as himself (1974)
  • The Muppet Show as himself (1976)
  • The Carpenters at Christmas as Harvey, the coffee guy (1977)
  • The Harvey Korman Show eponymous lead (1978)
  • Star Wars Holiday Special as Chef Gormaanda, Krelman, and Toy Video Instructor (1978)
  • The Tim Conway Show guest star (1980) and regular (1981)
  • Carpool (1983)
  • Mama's Family (1983–1984) (spin-off of The Family sketches, from The Carol Burnett Show) as Alistair Quince/Host and Ed Higgins/Eunice's husband
  • Leo & Liz in Beverly Hills as Leo Green (1986)
  • Nutt House as Reginald Tarkington (1989)
  • Hey Arnold! as voice of Don Reynolds (1996)
  • The Wild Thornberrys as the voice of Earl (1999)
  • The Brothers Flub voice (1999)
  • Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child as the voice of The Lion in "Aesop's Fables" (2000)
  • References

    Harvey Korman Wikipedia